The Lawrence County Chapter of the Penn State Alumni Association has awarded scholarships to three recent graduates.

The $750 awards were given to Lawrence County students who plan to attend Penn State. They were presented at the chapter’s annual freshman send-off picnic at Pearson Park.

The local alumni chapter annually gives scholarships to academically deserving students who are civic-minded. The chapter raises funds throughout the year for that project.

This year’s recipients are:

•Ciara Layne Hovis, a Laurel High School graduate and daughter of Joseph and Candee Hovis of Hickory Township.

She plans to attend Penn State’s main campus at University Park and major in biology and ecology.

Hovis was the class salutatorian. She has served on student council, peer leadership and National Honor Society and was president of the school’s Natural Science Society.

She also participated in school musicals in grades eight through 11 and had the lead role in her sophomore and junior years.

Outside school, she has participated in Lawrence County’s Big Brothers and Big Sisters program and has been involved in PA CleanWays by volunteering at recycling events and cleanups.

•Lisa Giancola, a graduate of Lincoln High School in Ellwood City and daughter of Robert and Christine Giancola of Old Pittsburgh Road.

She plans to attend Penn State’s Behrend Campus in Erie, studying mathematics. She aspires to have a career as an actuary.

At school she was on the varsity golf, softball and powder puff football teams. She was in National Honor Society, Peer Leadership, student council, the gifted program, History Club, International Club, the March of Dimes Club and Spanish Club.

Giancola was treasurer of the junior and senior classes, executive board member of Club Hope and chairwoman of the Fundraising for Caring team.

Her community activities include helping with the Ellwood City Food Bank, tutoring math after school, the Susan G. Komen Walk for the Cure, Relay for Life, Global Links, Rotary Club, Dale Brown Charity Golf Outing and the March for Babies.

•Andrew Villani, a graduate of Shenango High School and son of Andrew and Kathy Villani of 3110 Ellwood Road.

He plans to attend Penn State’s main campus at University Park to pursue a degree in engineering.

Villani played on both the football and track and field teams at school and was a member of Lawrence County Peer Leadership and National Honor Society.

He has helped to coach the Pop Warner and junior high football teams.

Villani is a member of St. Vitus Church, where he is an altar server.

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